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Former agri chief sees ‘exciting years’ ahead for PHL fisheries after DA chief Laurel appointment
Former agri chief sees ‘exciting years’ ahead for PHL fisheries after DA chief Laurel appointment
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Former agri chief sees ‘exciting years’ ahead for PHL fisheries after DA chief Laurel appointment
by Ada Pelonia04 November 2023

A former agriculture chief called the appointment of new Department of Agriculture (DA) secretary as “exciting years” for the country’s fisheries following President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s move to appoint fishing tycoon Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr. as the new DA secretary.

“From where I seat, exciting ito sapagkat this will be the first time na magkakaroon tayo ng kalihim ng agrikultura na siguro ay may bagong pananaw. This is the first time na magkaroon ng agricultrue secretary representing the fishery sector,” Former Agriculture Secretary Dr. Manny Piñol told DZRH.

“Dati rati kasi either political apointee or land-based agriculture ang orientation. Pangalawa, [...] corporate-oriented. Ibig sabihin, galing sa negosyo. He is involved in business, fisheries na ang endgame is income and profit, and this is something that’s been lacking sa ating agriculture mindset,” he added.

Piñol noted that for the longest time, the country agriculture department was focused on production while failing to see the processing, market access, and marketing.

“Siguro exciting years ito for the agriculture sector because meron tayong kalihim na naiintindihan niya na ang agrikultura ay hindi lang panghuhuli ng isda o pagtatanim kundi kailangan kumita ka, and that is a new perspective. Para sa akin, it’s a welcome development,” he said.

But the former agri chief underscored that since Laurel has been in the fisheries industry, he would need support in land-based agriculture.

“[S]yempre we have to understand na since fishery sector ang kanyang pinanggalingan, he’ll need a lot of support sa land-based agriculture,” Piñol said.

“[A]ko at ang aking grupo will support whoever the president chooses to be secretary of agriculture and in this case dahil kaibigan ko si Kiko, I’m going to support him personally and in my capacity as an agriculture advocate,” he added.

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